Sparkfun: a company that dedicates itself to enabling a foray into electronics for those who are inexperienced. Thankfully, their profit is high enough for them to be able to hold some remarkable events! I had an excellent time at their open house this fall and thought I’d share:
…..Another great project table was hosted by Scott Harris who owns Flatiron Research. He had three great projects on the table to talk about. The first two were light organs, one based on the Sparkfun LED strip and the other built from the readily hackable string of GE’s Christmas LEDs. His coolest project, however, was an autonomous robot that he used to win the annual Sparkfun autonomous vehicle competition. His car used GPS coordinates and acceleration data to feed a Kalman filter that drives the car along a pre-programmed path. It was so well tuned that this recent year the car drove at full throttle the entire time! Scott’s next step? A bigger motor so the car will actually have to use the brakes!…..